Reprinted with permission. First appeared online at Nothing in the Rulebook, March 16, 2022. If you’re a writer, chances are the challenge of writing microfiction stems from figuring out how to pare your story down to the essentials, rather than how to fill up the space. What is microfiction? First of all, if you’re not […]
Counting Words: How Long Should Your Book Be?
How long should your book be? That depends on your genre, story, budget, and marketing plan. Word count matters in publishing and to readers.
How Smells Move: An Interview by Author Amber Byers with Author Jeff Zentner
All writers have been told to “use the 5 senses,” but rarely are they told how to do that. When Amber decided to articulate how to write smell, she turned to Jeff Zentner for beautiful examples and advice. Here’s how you can write smell.
A Love Letter and Suggested Resources for Writers
Both editors and writers aim to inspire, inform, teach, and entertain their readers as they deeply and intensely explore their subject matter and create a wide range of materials that appear on and in a multitude of venues and publications. With humble appreciation, I offer some resources that might be useful for writers of fiction and nonfiction.
How to Develop a Writing Process
Whether you’re a fiction or nonfiction writer, developing a writing process will make you a more prolific writer and improve your craft. With a process in place, the act of writing becomes like any other routine task, such as getting out of bed or showering. It’s no longer a question whether you’re going to sit down and write—and that’s a powerful thing. Here’s how you can do that.
Tell Me a Story: Choosing a Narrative Structure
Fiction has an obvious story arc, but memoirs and narrative nonfiction benefit from a structure that supports compelling storytelling too. Consider that your story, whether real or imagined, has a protagonist: you, if you’re writing a memoir, or a main character. Even a self-help book has a protagonist—the reader.
How to Continue Writing While in Quarantine and Other Periods of Isolation
With stay-at-home and safer-at-home orders still in varying degrees of effect, our lives continue to be suspended in uncertainty. Most people are now working from home, and many people have watched helplessly as their jobs went away. Suddenly, we find ourselves sequestered with our households while everyone is in a state of high anxiety. Mix […]
How to Write Fiction for Children in 10 Steps
I guess I’m an extreme version of what I’ve heard called a “pantser.” Not only do I plot by the seat of my pants, I do everything that way. I’ve read the usual books on writing (Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg, On Writing by Stephen King, Plotting and Writing Suspense by Patricia Highsmith) […]
POV 2: How to Choose Point of View
As an author, one of the most important decisions you must make is what point of view you choose to use to tell your story. Point of view influences everything from how close readers feel to your characters to your word choice and sentence structure. It is the lens through which you tell your story. […]
POV 1: What Is Point of View?
When someone refers to point of view in writing, they are referring to the lens through which the story is told. This encompasses everything from who is telling the story to who the villain is to how close the reader feels to the characters and events. By choosing the right lens, an author can effectively […]